Help vulnerable people to manage their daily activities and to live as independently as possible

What does a care worker do?

In this role you could be:

  • getting to know clients and their interests and needs
  • helping with personal care like washing, using the toilet and dressing
  • food preparation, feeding and giving out medication
  • carrying out general tasks like housework, laundry and shopping
  • helping clients manage their budget, pay bills and write letters
  • going with clients to and from a residential home

You could also be:

  • supporting families with new caring responsibilities
  • giving emotional and practical support to children and young people
  • working with other health and social care professionals to provide individual care and development plans
  • helping to organise leisure activities

What do I need to do to become a care worker?

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • volunteering
  • applying directly


You could take a college course, which may help when you look for work. Courses include:

  • Level 1 Certificate in Health and Social Care
  • Level 2 Diploma in Care

Entry requirements:

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or fewer GCSEs at grades 3 to 1 (D to G) for a level 1 course
  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D) for a level 2 course

More information:


You could get into this job through an adult care worker intermediate apprenticeship or a lead adult care worker advanced apprenticeship.

Entry requirements:

There are no set entry requirements but it may help you to get in if you have:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, for an intermediate apprenticeship
  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), usually including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More information:

Volunteering and experience

You could do voluntary work with an organisation that supports vulnerable people.

Do-it has more information on voluntary opportunities in your area.

Direct application

You could apply directly and do training while in the job. You'll find it useful to have experience of working with people.

Some employers may expect you to have GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in English and maths, or equivalent qualifications.

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

Related skills

  • Communication
  • Customer service
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Organisation
  • Patience
  • Problem solving
  • Teamwork

Desirable qualifications

  • Level 1 Qualification in Health and Social Care
  • Level 2 Diploma in Care

Where to find out more

Career tips:

Time spent caring for someone you know also counts as having experience in a caring role.

Further information:

You can find out more about careers in care from Think Care Careers and Social Care TV.

Where could I be working?

You could work at an adult care home or at a client's home.

Your working environment may be physically demanding.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Career opportunities

You could progress to a more senior role, managing people or services.

As your career develops, you can move on to higher level qualifications, such as a foundation degree, social work degree or Level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management for Adult Care.

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

Related jobs

Job families